Araminta Ross, formerly known as Harriet Tubman was a significant African American woman. She freed slaves, worked as a nurse during the civil war, and was a spy. She was born into slavery in 1820, and later then escaped to Pennsylvania. Harriet Tubman was mostly known as an activist in history, who freed slaves and inspired people from different races and backgrounds.
Harriet Tubman was born in about 1820 into slavery, on a plantation in Maryland. She was born with the name Araminta Ross and later changed her name to Harriet when she became free in honor of her mother. Harriet had eight siblings, but slavery forced them apart. As a slave, Harriet often chose the outdoors work the domestic house chores. Harriet’s desire for justice started at the age of 12. She stepped in between an overseer and a fugitive slave, which resulted in an injury to the head. Her acts of justice left her with lifelong headaches and narcolepsy.
Harriet Tubman returned to Maryland for the first time in 1850 to help her niece escape to freedom through the Underground Railroad. The Underground Railroad was a network of safe houses and secret routes in the US that helped freed many African Americans. Harriet made use of this network when she escaped freeing land and became known as the conductor. In 1850 the Fugitive Slave Law was passed in the US where all escaped slaves could be captured in the north and be returned to the south, so Harriet Tubman rerouted the Underground Railroad to Canada.
When the Civil War broke out Tubman believed that victory for the union would be the next major step to the abolition of slavery. She worked as a nurse and cook for more than three years. She made remedies from local plants to help the sick and wounded soldiers. She worked with the armed forces until they took the victory in 1865.
She also participated in the Women’s Suffrage Movement and worked alongside Susan B. Anthony and Emily Howland. Tubman strongly believed in equality in all people no matter black, white, male, or female. Her role in the movement was more of a strong supporter and she traveled alongside her friends giving speeches about her experiences as a female slave. She also took part in the National Association of Colored Women’s Club, where she was the guest speaker for their first meeting in 1896.
Tubman also helped establish The Harriet Tubman Home for the Aged. It started from a small piece of land on the outskirts of Auburn, New York sold to her by US Senator William H. Seward. Harriet then donated a piece of the land instructing that it be used for the home.The home first opened its doors in 1908.
Harriet Tubman served as a historical icon for African Americans during her life. She was the first African American to be named after a liberty ship “SS Harriet Tubman” , and be on a US postage stamp. Tubman was a determined woman who believed in equality and rights of all people. Harriet Tubman freed over 70 slaves and inspired many people throughout her life.